6 things to check before booking serviced apartments for someone else

If you have been given the responsibility of booking accommodation, or specifically a serviced apartment, on behalf of someone else then it's important to really check everything you can in advance of the arrival day, so that you do not disappoint the guest staying.

You may be a PA, a travel manager, a booking coordinator, an HR manager or a colleague booking on behalf of someone else at your company. 

You may be booking for your boss, a senior level executive, the CEO, your team members, temporary contractors or interns. 

What is most important is that you find the best suitable match within your company's accommodation budget taking into account any preferences the guest staying may have and the overall experience on offer.

Here are our top 6 things to check before booking serviced apartments on behalf of someone else:

1. Covid-19 policies
Currently every property is operating extra safety and hygiene measures based on local government regulations to deal with the spread of Coronavirus.

This may affect the standard services that they may usually have provided so it is important to check what the policy is for the specific apartment you are booking and what services are restricted or not available. 

For example:
  • Gyms may be closed 
  • Check-in and check-out may be contactless 
  • Cleaning provisions and linen and towels may be handed over to the guest weekly instead of a housekeeping team entering the apartment to ensure "No-Contact" or social distancing and minimise risk of infection spread.
  • Grocery collection service may be provided 
  • Home working furniture and equipment may be available

These are some of the accreditations that serviced apartments are acquiring for their safety and hygiene procedures. Click the logo below to see more about the assessment programmes.

AA Covid 19 ConfidentVisit England We're good to goCSC Covid 19 Accredited

2. Location
Even in a city with excellent transport connections and a fast underground network, you can expect it to take longer to travel during rush hour, approximately 8:30am-10:00am and 5:00pm-7:00pm. 

So consider how important location is and whether an additional cost (if any) to stay closer to the main work address would mean less stress and more productivity for the employee staying in terms of commuting.

  • Ask the person you are booking on behalf of how far they would be comfortable with travelling
  • We recommend a maximum of 15-20 minutes walking or 30-45 minutes by transport from your serviced apartment address to your office site or meeting location
  • Keep in mind that there are delays every now and then and this can impact travel times or longer routes so the easier the commute the better 

3. Accessibility
This is without a doubt a major aspect of any stay.

The majority of serviced apartments only offer check-ins after 3:00pm which would mean a lot of waiting around with luggage for the guest if they are arriving on an early morning flight from a long-haul destination.

Check what time the guest is likely to arrive at the apartments and what time the apartment will be ready to check-in to.

If they require earlier access then it is always advisable to book from the previous night. 

In some cases, people are happy to leave their luggage on-site and explore the city until check-in, but note many serviced apartment do not have luggage storage facilities so if this is important then you may want to consider a property that offers a 24 hour reception or luggage room.

Check if the property has any of the below and inform the guest in advance to see if this would or would not be a problem for them during their stay.
  • Is there a 24 hour reception or on-site concierge?

  • Which floor is the property on?

  • Does the building have a lift? (some period properties can have up to 5 floors with no lift!)

  • How many apartments are there on each floor?

4. Payment
With regards to payment, in many cases we see that the booker is paying for the accommodation on behalf of the guest staying with a company credit card. In this situation, the card holder may not be present at the time of arrival.

If the guest staying is not paying with their own credit card then booker may be asked for a copy of ID of the card holder when paying by credit card.

For corporate clients with a credit account, a billing set up can arranged.

The guest staying must also note that they might be required to provide a security deposit or credit card pre-authorisation on arrival to cover against any incidentals. If the booker wishes to pay for the deposit, this can also be arranged.

5. Kitchens and laundry
Self-catering facilities are available in every serviced apartment, but the range of appliances and cooking facilities offered vary greatly depending on each apartment provider. 

Some offer designer fully equipped kitchens with integrated high-spec appliances such as dishwasher, washer dryer, electric hob etc while others may only have a small kitchenette style set up with just a hot plate, microwave, under the counter fridge and kettle. 

Guests staying for longer periods of time tend to prefer kitchens that have a full range of mod-cons, cooking utensils, large fridge/freezer, washing machine and dishwasher.

So if you are booking on behalf of someone staying for over 3 weeks, you should consider options that have these facilities even at a higher price point.

Doing the laundry may not seem so important for the booker, but it can be quite a big consideration for the guest staying.

With stays over 21+ nights, people tend to prefer to have the washing machine or washer dryer within the apartment and not have to use communal laundry rooms. 

Some basic-range properties only offer communal laundry rooms with coin-operated washing machines and dryers on-site so check if this will be a problem for the guest you are booking on behalf of. 

6. Sharing apartments
If you are booking for more than one individual then you may want to consider booking a larger apartment like a two bedroom apartment for two guests or a three bedroom apartment for three guests. 

Larger apartments offer better value for money for the booker and the space to socialise, rest or work for the sharers.

Need help?

If you are booking on behalf of someone else and need help finding the best option, contact us with your requirements. 

We can guide you on all the aspects of serviced apartment stays and ensure you and the guest you are booking on behalf of have a great experience.

Give us a call or email us today to ask about a serviced apartment in London.

+44 203 189 1269

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